DeFrancesco Bounces Back with Strong Detroit Race Pace
 June 14, 2021| 
  • Team News

•    Miami-based Italian-Canadian racer makes strong race progress in Detroit
•    Now up to fifth place in the Indy Lights points

DETROIT, Mich. – After suffering misfortune in both qualifying sessions, Andretti Steinbrenner Autosport Indy Lights racer Devlin DeFrancesco bounced back in both races this weekend on the bumpy streets of Belle Isle in Detroit.

Pushing the limits in qualifying, the 21-year-old tagged the wall in qualifying for Round Seven and was unable to get back on track as the times tumbled.

Qualifying for Round Eight was equally fraught with the Miami-based Italian-Canadian racer making heavy contact with the wall and causing his team to battle a race against time to repair the car in time for Saturday’s first race.

Not only did DeFrancesco’s Andretti Steinbrenner Autosport crew dive into repairs – they were joined by mechanics from the three other cars in the Andretti Autosport Indy Lights stable.

Making it back on track in time, DeFrancesco started 11th and made strong progress to gain four positions – including two in the final laps of the race – to finish seventh.

In today’s eighth round of the Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires championship, DeFrancesco started ninth and combined strong race pace with smart restarts to again gain four positions to cross the line in fifth place.

The two results elevated DeFrancesco to fifth place in the points on the eve of the Road America round of the championship, which kicks off with testing this Thursday – June 17.

Making his North American open-wheel racing debut at the 4.048 mile Road America road course last year, DeFrancesco scored the pole in Indy Pro 2000 and came within inches of taking victory on his debut.

DeFrancesco will again fly the flag for lead sponsor PowerTap Hydrogen next weekend at Road America. The 2020 Indy Pro 2000 Rookie of the Year’s other Indy Lights supporters include Kimoa – the fashion, clothing, and accessories brand founded by Fernando Alonso; world-class racing simulator manufacturer AIS; Apple’s largest premium retail partner, Simply Mac; software and services company Fyllo and Sol Yoga.

DEVLIN DEFRANCESCO: "Today was definitely a better day than yesterday. I guess you can call it a damage limitation day from starting P9 after the crash in qualifying to recover to P5. We were very good on the restarts to make up some spots. We seemed to lose the rear as the race went on, so we’ll have to look at that but I’m happy to at least make up some positions today and score some points.

“I’m still amazed at the effort of the Andretti Autosport and Andretti Steinbrenner Autosport guys in getting my Powertap Hydrogen car back on track after the crash on Saturday morning. That was incredible and I’m so thankful.

“Despite a challenging weekend, we still moved up a position in the points to fifth place. Now it’s eyes forward to Road America. It’s a track I love and was fast at in testing, so I can’t wait to get to Elkhart Lake on Thursday.”

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